The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
August 16, 2001

Statement by the President

On January 29, 2001, I signed an Executive Order creating Centers for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives in the Departments of Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, Justice, and Education. I charged each Center to conduct a Department-wide audit and identify all existing barriers to the participation of faith-based and community organizations in Federal social service programs.

Over the past six months, five Cabinet Offices for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives have examined administrative procedures, programs, and policies. Today, the White House Office on Faith-Based and Community Initiatives reported their findings.

The report, entitled Unlevel Playing Field, highlights the funding gap between the government and the grassroots. It points out significant barriers organizations face in obtaining Federal support for their compassionate work. And it shows clearly how much work needs to be done to mobilize the Armies of Compassion.

The Cabinet Centers have done vitally important work in examining Federal social service programs. We now see exactly what kind of obstacles stand in the way of a more compassionate America. Our emphasis must always remain on getting compassionate results. We look forward to addressing these inequities through legislation, administrative action, and education. Americans in need are depending upon it.


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